Charming Billy: A Novel (Picador Modern Classics) (Paperback)
Charming Billy is the winner of the 1998 National Book Award for Fiction.
Alice McDermott's striking novel, Charming Billy, is a study of the lies that bind and the weight of familial love, of the way good intentions can be as destructive as the truth they were meant to hide.
Billy Lynch's family and friends have gathered to comfort his widow, and to pay their respects to one of the last great romantics. As they trade tales of his famous humor, immense charm, and consuming sorrow, a complex portrait emerges of an enigmatic man, a loyal friend, a beloved husband, an incurable alcoholic.
About the Author
Alice McDermott is the author of several novels, including The Ninth Hour; Someone; After This; Child of My Heart; Charming Billy, winner of the 1998 National Book Award; and At Weddings and Wakes—all published by FSG. That Night, At Weddings and Wakes, and After This were all finalists for the Pulitzer Prize. Her stories and essays have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The New Yorker, Harper’s Magazine, and elsewhere. For more than two decades she was the Richard A. Macksey Professor of the Humanities at Johns Hopkins University and a member of the faculty at the Sewanee Writers Conference. McDermott lives with her family outside Washington, D.C.
“This is fiction as good as it gets.” —USA Today
“A luminous and affecting novel.” —Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
“There's no one like Alice McDermott for catching the ebullient particulars of the Irish-American sensibility…her touch is light as a feather, her perceptions purely accurate.” —Elle
“McDermott demonstrates anew that she is a writer in a league all her own.” —People
“...a rueful shrug of a novel whose strong, shrewd opening pages should be taught in college writing classes.” —Time